Your husband needs you to admire this!

We all know women are pretty obsessed with their appearance, but men care about how they appear as well.  Specifically, they want to appear strong.  Your guy probably isn’t going to tell you this, but most husbands want you to appreciate their strength.  They want you to notice and be in awe of their muscles!

It’s in a man’s DNA to want to exude physical strength.  When God first created man, the Bible says in Genesis 2:15, “The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and keep it.”   Those instructions to cultivate the garden involve strength and power.  So, affirm your husband’s strength.  The next time he lifts something heavy, notice his strength and let him know it!  If you actually see a bulging bicep, treat it like eye-candy and tell him his biceps are sexy.  I bet you’ll see your husband’s eyes light up a little bit, and more importantly, I believe you’ll also see him grow in confidence.  He wants to be your hero.  He needs to be your hero.

Do you no longer feel “in love” with your husband?

Have you lost that “in love” feeling with your husband?  Are you feeling like there should be more in your relationship?  There could be some major problems in your marriage that need to be addressed.  However, it could be that you’ve fallen prey to the notion that your relationship with your husband should resemble the thrill of new romance portrayed in chick flicks and romance novels.

Now, don’t get me wrong.  I love watching a good romantic movie like The Proposal with Sandra Bullock.  I enjoy reading Christian romance novels.  However…you and I have to be so careful that we don’t start subconsciously thinking our marriages should have that constant thrill of new romance.  That’s unrealistic.  There is no way we’re going to be “twitterpated” (like Thumper in the Bambi movie) all the time!  Also, our husbands couldn’t possibly be as breathtaking as the men portrayed in the romantic comedies or as perfect as the men in the Christian romance novels!  It’s all a beautiful delusion from the enemy who wants to destroy your marriage.   I guess we shouldn’t be surprised.  The Bible says in 2 Corinthians 11:14 “Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light

And here’s one more caution.  Did you realize that many romantic comedies actually promote a woman leaving the man she’s with to find the “true soul mate” awaiting her?  Yikes!  We get so involved with the romance story that we don’t even notice this is the case!  Think of Scarlett O’Hara in Gone With The Wind.  She pines away for the man who’s already married to someone else.  In Sleepless In Seattle, Meg Ryan’s character is engaged but feels there must be someone better out there.  The list goes on and on.  So, let’s be careful to avoid unrealistic expectations of our men and our marriages.

Something you must do when disagreements arise

It’s vital for you and your spouse to come into agreement on the major issues within your marriage, such as finances, parenting, time spent on recreation, frequency of sex, etc.  You must come into agreement because division in a marriage often leads to the eventual collapse of that marriage.  God’s word even states this.  In Matthew 12:25, Jesus says “Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand.”

So, what should you do if you and your spouse are consistently divided in a specific area?  Do NOT just throw your hands up in the air and give up!  You must decide to respectfully, but thoroughly, discuss the issue with your husband UNTIL you reach an agreement!  You MUST persevere until the issue is resolved!

Ask God for the right timing and ask God to prepare your heart and your husband’s heart for the conversation ahead.  The goal is to reach a compromise that you can both support.  And, if you can’t reach such a compromise on your own, then seek help from a pastor, counselor, or mentor couple.  Do whatever you need to do to come into agreement with your husband on this issue.  It will bring peace to you, your marriage, and your household!

P.S.  If the disagreement stems from your husband wanting to do something immoral, then compromise isn’t the right option!  In that case, you will likely want to see help from a counselor or pastor, and you may have to establish boundaries in the relationship.

One key to regaining joy during hardship

I know this might sound too simple.  I know you could be rolling your eyes as you read this. But give this a chance.  A huge key to regaining some of your joy during challenges or after a heartbreaking event is…to focus on the things for which you can be thankful.

All of us tend to focus on what we don’t have instead of what we do have.  By doing so, we become bitter, jealous, and depressed women.  Now if you actually enjoy being bitter and depressed, you just go right on concentrating on what’s wrong in your life.  However, there is a better way to live.  God recommends it in the Bible.  It’s called being thankful for what you do have.  1 Thessalonians 5:18 tells us to “give thanks in all circumstances“.  This means disciplining your mind to focus on what is good and right and beautiful. God puts it this way in Philippians 4:8 “whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”

Do you have shelter and plenty of food to eat each day?  Wow! You’re in the top 10% of the entire world!  Do you have someone in your life (husband, mother, friend, child) who loves you?  Wonderful!  Do your legs and hands work?  Can you see, hear, and taste?  Thank God for the health that not everyone enjoys.  Has God made himself known to you and drawn your heart to him?  Awesome!  That means he thinks you’re special and he decided before the beginning of the world to select you to adopt as his child!

Yes, there is a time to grieve losses in our lives.  But we can’t stay camped out there!  Let’s make a concerted effort to focus our minds on being thankful.  Little by little, you may find your joy returning, even during hard times.

How to trade counterfeit comfort for real comfort

We all inevitably hit rough patches in our marriages.  In fact, there will likely be moments when you think “Why did I even marry this man?!”  He may break a little piece of your heart when he forgets your anniversary, or is overly harsh with the kids, or develops a habit of satisfying himself while viewing pornography instead of making love to you.  At these moments, you need comfort for your broken heart.

It’s our tendency to reach for something easy and tangible as a source of comfort.  You might try to find some joy in buying lots of new clothes.  I might turn to excessive food.  But neither one of those choices truly comforts us.  They actually lead to additional grief in the long run!  Instead, both you and I need to train ourselves to run to God at those heart-breaking moments.  He is waiting with open arms.  Plus, Jesus knows what it feels like to suffer grief, betrayal, and a broken heart.

I love these two verses of comfort.  Psalm 103:2-4 “Praise the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits; who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion”.  And Psalm 34:18 “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit”.  Meditate on those 2 verses and ask God to come close to you.  He will, and I believe you will experience the warmth of his love!

— or view this topic as a 3 minute VIDEO HERE

These simple things will draw your husband to you!

You want a quick and easy way to show respect to your husband and improve your marriage?  Just notice a few small things your husband seems to appreciate and then…..do them!  What a concept!  I mean, why wouldn’t we want to please our husbands?  Why wouldn’t we want to be kind and thoughtful?  Colossians 3:12 tells us “as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.”  So, if we could do just a couple things differently, in a way that our husbands prefer, why wouldn’t we extend that kindness to them?

Let me give you some examples.  My husband insists that if we load the dishwasher in a certain way, it cleans the silverware better.  (I don’t think it makes any difference!).  But, I do it the way he likes…because it pleases him.  I know my husband loves it when I leave a little note of encouragement for him on the kitchen counter at least once a week.  So I intentionally do that every week.  I know my husband really appreciates a clean kitchen counter, so I try to keep the counters tidy. Why wouldn’t I want to please him in such a small way?  I’m not saying a wife should have no opinion and should simply be a doormat for her husband.  But I think God would be pleased if I stopped only thinking of myself and started thinking a little more about blessing my husband!

How about you?  Could you intentionally take note of a few things your husband really appreciates, and then actually do some of those things?  It would make him feel respected.  It would draw his heart to you. It would likely improve your marriage.  Sometimes, it’s the little things…

Are you a codependent mom or wife?

Can a Christian woman be too helpful?  Can she be too nice?  I believe the answer is yes.  We likely have wonderful intentions, but when we are so “nice” that we enable our husband or adult children to act irresponsibly or to stay immature, we are being too nice.  And many of us fit this description.  We are too helpful.  We are codependent.  We train our loved ones to be dependent on us, instead of God.  We train them to rely on us to do things for them that they should really do themselves as responsible adults.  Often, we also train them to expect us to bail them out of the natural consequences of their foolish or sinful decisions.

Why are many women codependent?  Perhaps because we are overly concerned with wanting everyone to like us!  We fear what others think of us.  However, the Bible says in Proverbs 29:25  “Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe.”

Now, I’m not saying that we shouldn’t be loving and kind.  Of course we should.  However, we go too far when our “kindness” enables immature and irresponsible and even sinful behavior in others.  We go too far when we try to spare our loved ones from consequences and when we carry their responsibilities.  Galatians 6:5 says “Each one should carry his own load”.  

 Here are 2 questions you can ask yourself to help determine if you are too helpful or too nice:

1) Are my actions preventing my husband or children from becoming mature and responsible?

2) Am I doing things for them that they should be doing themselves?